Kent Somers of the Arizona Republic breaks down a few of the big decision the Cardinals will face this offseason.
Cardinals WR Larry Fitzgerald will make $12.75 million for the 2014, but it’s really his staggering $18 million cap figure that could create some problems this offseason.
As Somers notes, Fitzgerald would account for about 14.3 percent of the projected $126 million cap. According to Somers, Fitzgerald “isn’t going to take a pay cut,” which means the Cardinals only option could be restructure his contract and covert a portion of his salary into a signing bonus.
Reducing Fitzgerald’s cap figure is a big deal when you consider that they will have a few free agents to address and Patrick Peterson is in line for a huge contract extension.
Speaking of Peterson. he will enter the final year of his rookie deal and is now eligible to negotiate a long-term deal.
Even though Peterson is in position to secure a monster contract, the Cardinals could ask for some financial consideration in order open dialogue regarding an extension, according to Somers.
Peterson’s camp could wait until Richard Sherman signs an extension before offering any specific contract figures.
Meanwhile, the Cardinals will need to decide whether or not to pick up ILB Daryl Washington’s $10 million option bonus.
This is an interesting situation just for the fact that Washington was suspended for the first four games of the season after he violated the league’s substance abuse policy. He has also had other off-the-field issues, but there is no question that he brings a lot to their defense.
“As it looks now, the Cardinals will pay the bonus, keeping Washington under contract for the next four seasons,” Somers writes.
Assuming that’s the case, Washington has base salaries of $3.4 million in 2015 and another $4.4 million for the 2016 and 2017 seasons.
Pro Football Focus has Washington rated as the No. 7 inside linebacker in the league this season.